I hope you were able to have a safe Labor Day Weekend, also known as the unofficial end of summer, especially down the Shore. It was a strange one, that’s for sure. My colleagues Lauren Schneiderman and Astrid Rodrigues were out capturing pictures and videos of what it was like.

It’s also a time of transition for Philly sports teams. While the Sixers and Flyers have made their playoff exits in recent weeks, the Eagles kick off their season this Sunday, the Phillies won a roller coaster game yesterday, and the Union are back playing games and scoring highlight-worthy goals.

— Josh Rosenblat (@joshrosenblat, morningnewsletter@inquirer.com)

Philadelphia is still very much a labor town. Here’s how workers are fighting back.

Labor means a lot to Philly. But the specifics of what that looks like have changed over the years, my colleague Juliana Feliciano Reyes reports. Low-wage service workers, both union and nonunion, are using their increasing political power. Rank-and-file workers are challenging establishment labor leaders. Highly educated workers are turning to unions to help make sure that seemingly progressive institutions maintain their values.

Even with these changes though, American workers’ union membership is the lowest it’s ever been. At the same time, public support for unions is at its highest in nearly two decades, according to a Gallup poll. Yesterday, on Labor Day, Philly workers rallied for pandemic protections.

Philly’s gun violence has hit startling levels: ‘This is a real pandemic in itself’

In August, Philadelphia’s gun violence crisis surged to unmatched levels in recent city history. The Police Department reported that 275 people were shot. That’s by far the highest single-month total since at least 2007. It was the fourth month in a row that the victim tally grew to marks the city hasn’t seen in years, according to police data.

The explanations vary depending on whom you talk to. Some city officials, such as Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw and District Attorney Larry Krasner, have routinely pointed to systemic issues that they say have gotten worse during 2020, including poverty, lack of opportunity, and easy access to guns. U.S. Attorney William McSwain and rank-and-file members of the Police Department have blamed Krasner for being too lenient on criminal defendants.

5 questions that will help decide the presidential race in Pennsylvania

Last week, a major Democratic political group presented a chart that projected each party’s path to victory in the presidential election. Pennsylvania sat dead center as the state most likely to decide the winner.

It’s impossible to name just one key to winning the state, my colleague Jonathan Tamari writes. Instead, Tamari offers five key questions that could help determine who wins the Keystone State, including whether the suburbs continue to turn blue and how much COVID-19 will impact voters.

What you need to know today

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Love getting some green with my Philly skyline pics. Thanks for sharing, @jasonbatesimagery.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

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Opinions

“While wages are key, losing a job means losing much more than income. With work so ingrained into all aspects of American life, culture, and value systems, when work disappears so can a sense of purpose and identity.” — writes The Inquirer Editorial Board about how this Labor Day was unlike any other.

What we’re reading

Your Daily Dose of | Dinosaurs

More than 70 lifelike animatronic dinosaurs invaded the Wells Fargo Center parking lot this weekend, bringing folks from across the region. The traveling show is billed as North America’s biggest and most realistic dinosaur exhibit. It’s scheduled to run through Sept. 20. You can check out pictures here.